F1: MercedesAMG’s Rosberg on the Pole for the European Grand Prix

F1: MercedesAMG’s Rosberg on the Pole for the European Grand Prix

F1: MercedesAMG’s Rosberg on the Pole for the European Grand Prix

Nico Rosberg will start on pole position for the F1 European Grand Prix in Baku, Azerbaijan.

Mr. Rosberg set a pace of 1:42.758 at the same time his MercedesAMG teammate, Lewis Hamilton, crashed out of the session

Mr. Hamilton had to take an escape road 3X over the course of the qualifying session. He had trouble posting a clean lap in during the session, and ultimately put his car into the wall in the 3rd session, drawing a Red Flag with just 2 mins left. The Red Flag came up just as Mr. Rosberg set the fastest qualifying time of the session for pole position.

Sergio Pérez of Force India, who has been excellent in recent weeks, had a 5-place grid penalty for a change of gearbox so there was a bit of optimism as he frequently put himself in the podium positions throughout the weekend. Mr. Pérez qualified 2nd for the race, beating out Daniel Ricciardo in 3rd and Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel in 4th.

Messers Ricciardo and Vettel both set the same time in the 3rd qualifying session, but Mr. Ricciardo did it 1st and so got position over Mr. Vettel for the race.


The new F1 street circuit in Baku has proven to be fairly difficult for several of the top drivers, having been described as a fast Monaco.

Nico Hülkenberg, driving a Force India that has looked more competitive than ever in recent weeks, had a miscommunication with the crew in the garage, his last chance at putting himself in the Top 10 was squandered when he was uncertain if he had enough fuel in the car to run another lap. He claimed his team did not tell him that he’d had enough, and his team claimed they did. He ended up in 12th position for the race Sunday.

Jenson Button was the lone surprise going out in the first qualifying session. He and McLaren teammate Fernando Alonso have been right on the cusp of the 3rd qualifying session and the Top 10 for much of the season. But Mr. Button went out in the 1st session and will start from 19th on the grid.

Mr. Alonso was not close to the Top 10 this time either, finishing in 14th place.

The Haas Team’s Romain Grosjean came close to making it into the 3rd qualifying session, but was beaten by Felipe Massa of Williams and will have to start 11th Sunday.

Mr. Massa missed the flag near the end of the 3rd qualifying session and was unable to set another lap. He qualified in 6th on the grid.

Below are the full results from qualifying, note that Mr. Perez will actually start in 7th due to his grid penalty, creating a Top 3 of Messers Rosberg, Ricciardo and Vettel.

The 2016 F1 European Grand Prix Sunday appears it will be under a bright. sunny weather pattern

Sunday’s Race: NBCSN 8:00a EDT

Enjoy the racing.

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